February 04, 2004 - The Philippines has played host to a number of international Volleyball teams participating in the Women's World Grand Prix since 1994 and 10 years on the Southeast Asian country is preparing to do the same again.
The World Grand Prix is the counterpart of the Men's World League and focuses on the participation of all the world's top teams. Asian has been a regular venue for the premier women's Volleyball event and is set to do so again this year, with Manila leading the way.
Ninoy Aquino Stadium in the Philippine capital of Manila was the venue of the first Grand Prix leg (Korea, USA, Peru and the Netherlands participating) held in the country in 1994.
The tournament's third leg in 1999 was held at the PSC-Philsports Multi-Purpose Arena in Pasig City where perennial Volleyball stronghold Cuba topped the standings ahead of Italy, Brazil and Korea.
The year 200 was a highlight for the Philippines as it hosted the World Grand Prix third leg and finals. The event was a sell out at the PSC-Philsports Multi-Purpose Arena with standing room only. The atmosphere was electric as Filipinos witnessed exciting matches by eventual champion Cuba, runner-up Russia, bronze medalists Brazil, Korea, China, Japan, Italy and USA. Incidentally, the medal winners at that Grand Prix in 2000 finished on the podium in that year's Summer Olympics in Sydney.
More recently, another major arena the Araneta Coliseum played host to the 2002 World Grand Prix with Russia, Japan, Brazil and Germany all taking in the delights of Quezon City.
This year, the country is set to welcome teams from Brazil, Korea, Poland and the Dominican Republic among others for the 2004 edition of the World Grand Prix at the PSC-Philsports Multi-Purpose Arena, Pasig City, Philippines.